Thursday, October 4, 2018

Happy 5 Years To Me!

So as it happens, it was 5 years (and maybe 15 days) ago that I moved from Norwich to the big smoke. London quickly became my second home and it didn't take me long to fall in love with it. After 8 moves via Uber, eventful to say the least, I am settled in my West London home (for now) and still discovering new and exciting things on the daily. Here are some of my London tips and favourite places for you to enjoy: 

1. Sketch London: an 18th century townhouse filled with a Michelin-starred restaurant, a woodland cocktail bar, an arty tea room.. and the most instagrammed toilets in London. This place is just off Regent Street and super easy to find. I went for a simple afternoon tea (and photoshoot of course) and paid no more than £15 for the afternoon. If you are going in the evening I suggest you book, but daytime walk ins are accepted. A MUST visit! 

2. Portobello Road: a famous street market with stalls offering everything from fruit and bread to posters, vintage clothes, ceramics and music. Get the tube straight to Ladbroke Grove on the Hammersmith and City line, turn right out the station and it's only a few minutes away. Visit the multicoloured houses and try fruit from the stalls, delicious! I would advise you to avoid the weekends (if possible) and get your cameras ready for some celebrity sightings! 

Other tips and tricks: For visiting guests into fitness download the 'class pass' app- you get 3 free fitness classes at some great studios across London (my favourites are Core Collective and F45.)Don't be fooled by the MASSIVE underground map! Stations are a lot closer than you think and it's quicker and less stress to walk (Embankment to Oxford Circus = 25 minutes.) Also download ViaVan- it's the new Uber and 1/3 of the price! 

3. The Royal Observatory, Greenwich: an observatory situated on a hill in Greenwich Park, overlooking the River Thames. Maybe more suited to a Summers day however Greenwich is such a lovely and undiscovered part of London. Located on the DLR just 30 minutes from Liverpool St, you are transported to an "old world" style town with amazing markets (and food), cobbled streets and historic sitings such as the Cutty Sark. Visit Gypsy Moth for one of the best Sunday dinners around and take a stroll into the park for an amazing view point. 

4. NIGHTLIFE: something for everyone! For non Londoners, this can be quite overwhelming at times. My best advice is to avoid Mayfair. These clubs have such long queues and waiting up to an hour can kill the vibe! I lived in East London last year and had some of the best nights... start at Junkyard Golf, dive in at Ballie Ballerson and then head to Queen of Hoxton before finishing the night at Pizza Pilgrams (duh?!) For a more social vibe, check out The Ship in Wandsworth or KOKO in Camden, whatever suits you! I've definitely become accustomed to "London prices" however don't be fooled... not every bar charges £12 a g&t!  

Ahhh London! A great city and home that shouldn't be avoided just because it has big crowds and higher prices. If you take it slow and enjoy the sights, you are guaranteed to have a great time! Before I go I have to mention BOXPARK in Shoreditch. I spent like everyday there for a good 3 months- get the cheese chips at Poptata, you won't regret it!


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